31
Jul
2011

BACKYARD EGG FARMER’S OPEN LETTER TO THE INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE, by Tim Brown

Brown works as a librarian at Wofford College in Spartanburg, S.C., where he lives and writes.

 

I’ve got Form 4868 (Application for Automatic Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual Tax Return) here in front of me. The instructions seem straightforward enough: I must record my personal information, including my occupation, and then calculate my estimated total tax liability, the total tax payment I already made, the balance, and the amount of the balance I am sending in along with my extension form. But in the time it takes to do all of these things, I could just about file my taxes. For consolation, I did some quick research and found that I am among an estimated ten million Americans in this pickle.

I woke early yesterday morning, the day before the deadline, with the intention of filing my taxes as soon as I completed my chores: Watering and fertilizing my vegetable garden; staking tomatoes; sewing additional rows of lima beans and sugar snap peas; fitting the stems of crookneck squash with tinfoil collars to protect them against insect borers; planting marigolds to redirect such tourists as the Mexican bean beetle to my neighbors’ yards; snaking my gloved hand through beds of money plant, Queen Anne’s lace, and phlox to extract smartweed, greenbrier, and poison ivy; cleaning my pet chickens’ compact coop; and dusting their fresh bedding straw with diatomaceous earth to ward off mites. As evening approached, I stood outside the coop with an aromatic cigar and a glass of chardonnay, and recited a few poems by Gerard Manley Hopkins. His words and “sprung rhythm” quiet the hens, especially at this time of year, the height of their annual egg production, “When weeds, in wheels, shoot long and lovely and lush.”

As you see, one chore led to another, until darkness descended and I found myself doing a load of laundry, including the denim bib overalls I had been wearing. After running the load through the dryer, I discovered that I had left my checkbook in my overalls (till then, I had drunk but one glass of wine). With the checkbook in tatters, the dryer looked as if the seed head of a dandelion or a cattail had exploded inside.

Not only did my checkbook contain all of the charitable contributions I made this past year, which I need to itemize to attach to my 1040 (Individual Income Tax) Form, but it also contained all of the cash payments that a local farm-and-garden-supply store gave me for my organic, free-range eggs. My hens produce between one- and two-dozen eggs each week, even during winter, when the heat lamp in the coop supplements the sun.

As a farmer, I operate by the motto “Intensive variety!” My entire yard — front and back — is just shy of one third of an acre. In my backyard I grow a little bit of everything, from asparagus to leaf lettuce to zucchini. Recently, I have branched out into fruits — blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, strawberries, muscadines, and scuppernongs. Still, my chickens’ eggs are the only produce I claim to make a profit on. This cherished sum grows suspect upon close examination because of my rising production costs — organic feed and herbal wormer treatment as well as cigars and wine.

Once I get my checkbook pieced back together, I shall complete my 1040 Form and then send it in along with my remaining balance and a dozen fresh eggs. I trust that FedEx can deliver them overnight and intact. In addition to your understanding, I ask for a personal favor: Might you consider changing my recorded occupation from “college librarian” to “college librarian and backyard egg farmer?” This nominal change may not qualify me to get a coveted “Farm Truck” license plate from my State’s Department of Motor Vehicles, yet it would give my vanity a shot of 10-10-10. Later this spring I am going to visit my parents, whose neighbor used to be president of my hometown’s 4-H Club. Although retired, he continues to cultivate a crop of future agronomists. It would thrill me to surprise him with my new official title, to give him one more opportunity to “hurrah,” as Hopkins likes to say, “in the harvest.”

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11
Oct
0005

Fuck Me

That’s right, but no, I guess I really don’t want you to pierce any of my orifices with any sort of projectile attached, or not, to your body. I’m writing this for purely vain reasons. If you’re still with me, haven’t backed up to your preferred search engine to scroll down and look for more worthy porn, listen to what I have to say. THE2NDHAND.com, an entity for which I am mostly responsible, receives a certain amount of traffic brought about by people just like you, trolling the Internet for scantily-clad men and women and their children. That’s right, the number one search item yielding results and producing links to THE2NDHAND.com is none other than phrase “family fucking.” Try it.

1) open new browser window.

2) visit the ever-popular google.com, the top-rated search engine the www over.

3) in the search box, type in the requisite “family fucking.”

4) hit the “enter” key on your computer keyboard (it may be rectangular or, like the corresponding key on the cheapest keyboard on offer at the Chicago Microcenter, it may well be better described as the confluence of a vertical rectangle and a square that juts off from the lower left-hand side of said rectangle).

5) view the search results. At the very precipice of the list of said results, notice a seemingly innocuous phrase-link, though rendered in screaming all-caps type, THINK LIKE A MOUNTAIN, followed by a stream of text, with the various search terms bolded for ease of determination of relevance to your search criteria, proof that, yes, Google yields relevant results: Family fucking meeting, family fucking meeting,” the father yelled. … Family fucking meeting here.” From the three other corners of the house arrived …

6) follow the link to THINK LIKE A MOUNTAIN, a story featured in THE2NDHAND’s 11th print edition, and what you will quickly realize is that the “family” in the resulting text is not necessarily “fucking” in any traditional or literal sense. The story, by Paul A. Toth, can only be said to involve a “fucking family” metaphorically. The family’s town, a mining town whose mines are on fire, the vast majority of the town having long ago evacuated, might be “fucked,” again in a metaphorical sense, but the father does not fuck the daughter or even the mother, nor the son the mother or daughter either. The picture presented of said family is most asexual, in fact — a set of creatures on the verge of something, of moving, of history, of cataclysmic mine collapse and hence of burning, but not sex or any kind of incestuous relationship.

7) perhaps hitting the back button of your browser is here in order.

8) Scan down through the list of Google search results for “family fucking” and you will find perhaps more interesting fare: Wealth Bondage: Family Fucking Values Daddy says we have family fucking intellectual capital, family fucking social capital, and family fucking financial capital. Mmmmmmm. And all for me, …

or

Free Adult Black Gay Men Fucking. … fucking family fucking incest family fucking jetsons fucking mother and son fucking eminem fucking alien fucking virgins fucking …

which is definitely my favorite in the list. Not only do we have the abstract “family” fucking, but also the Jetsons, a space-age family themselves, doing it — in addition black gay men and Eminem, which is pretty cool, and an alien too.

All of which is maybe neither here nor there. Most importantly, let it be known, by writing a piece with the title “Fuck Me” and making it available online I have ensured myself a long history of readers, and I’ve striven here to make the experience as enjoyable as possible. Because, indeed, the number two search item yielding results and producing links to THE2NDHAND.com is none other than phrase “fuck me now,” which results in Joe Deir’s seminal “See Me Now, Fuck Me Later.” You might try it. Deir’s masterpiece doesn’t come up as the first result, but rather the second. All of which I might suggest to you suggests in turn a slight bit of desperation on the part of our populace, a need to be loved, to be fucked, whether said fucking involves a sort of incest situation or not. Just take the first “fuck me now” result: ok . . . I give up . . . just fuck me like a whore I give up . . . just fuck me like a whore … OK – I have been trying to meet a “nice” guy for quite a while now, using both traditional methods (set-ups …

OK? Enough said?

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